- Clowes Memorial
Beneath the Tower
By Bob White - Nebraska
A week or so ago I was again
most willingly subjected to The Judy Garland Mystique, and for the benefit
of the... Judy Garland aficionados, I'm happy to report that Judy's personal
appearances are as exhilarating as ever. Her voice seems throatier
and her dictum would still give Hortense Moore or Kay Porter the whim-whams.
But the Judy throb is still there, and her stage personality is Show Biz
personified. She pulls out all stops on audience -pleasing, from
sitting on the edge of the stage to making her entrance from the back of
the house, shaking hands enroute to the stage, and the standing ovations
attest to her success.
I saw Judy in the first of
two concerts at Clowes Memorial Hall on the Butler University campus, and
I agree fully with the Indianapolis Star report which noted that 'she has
a voice like an organ in a delicate, twinkling highly-tensed body that
doesn't seem to have grown two inches since she played Dorothy in THE WIZARD
OF OZ nearly thirty years ago. When she cuts loose with a crescendo
(almost swallowing the microphone, I might add), it makes people want to
stand up and cheer. She has been for years the most excitingly jubilant
popular singer of our time. Now she has new depth of feeling and
variety of tone color that give her a more wonderful exhuberance.
Prior to the concert we dined
at the new Stouffer Inn on North Meririan, and as we departed, there at
the entrance stood a large limousine with doors ajar. Humming a bar
two of "But Not For Me." I waited only two or three minutes until
Judy appeared, flanked by manager Sid Luft and another aide or two.
Looking very tiny, her hair was completely wrapped in a white turban, wearing
a red gabardine coat and no makeup, she hurried into the waiting car and
sped away. She might have been any petite cocoon hurrying off to
work at the ribbon counter of Block's or Watson's. But when she came
striding down the aisle of Clowes Memorial wearing a pixy-ish tailored
suit of brown and gold sequins with a bright green bow at the neck, with
the artificial lashes and the great big smile, she was the evanescent butterfly
that made it "Over the Rainbow." And the crowd cheered her latest
"comeback" as if it had been "a trip to the moon on gossamer wings."